Weeknight Sheet Pan Dinners
Posted on October 04, 2016
Just as one-pot meals make dinner preparation and cleanup so
much easier than a stovetop full of assorted pots and pans, sheet pan dinners
do the same for oven-based meals. Consider these the modern update to casserole
dinners. Using a single baking sheet to make a complete meal—a roasted protein
paired with an assortment of vegetables—means that everything cooks for about
the same amount of time, as long as some general guidelines are taken into
consideration. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Line the baking sheet properly with foil (preferably
heavy-duty, for its larger size and resistance to tearing) and spray with
nonstick cooking spray or brush with oil to prevent the food from sticking.
Once the food is done cooking, simply throw away the foil: no washing required!
- Choose proteins and vegetables that match up in terms of
cooking times. For example, pair quick-cooking items together, like fish with
zucchini, snap peas and cherry tomatoes. If one ingredient takes significantly
longer to cook than another, it’s not the end of the world, but you’ll need to
start it first and add the other items later. This will require keeping more of
an eye on the oven.
- Cut the vegetables into bite-sized pieces to speed up
cooking and make serving easy.
- Consider adding a dry rub or marinade to the protein before
baking, or brushing on a sauce or glaze afterwards. The same goes for the
vegetables: a sauce or vinaigrette can do wonders to punch up the final flavors.
- For the protein, chicken pieces make a great default
choice, but the following are also good options: fish fillets, pork chops, pork
tenderloin, meatballs, sausages, and tofu slabs.
- Prep the ingredients the night before to save time.
- Because the oven is already on, toss any additional
complementary items—such as pita, tortillas, naan or bread—onto another oven
rack to warm up during the last few minutes of cooking.
Another great thing about this method of cooking is that the
components typically make excellent, versatile leftovers. The protein can be
sliced, shredded, or kept as-is and used as a sandwich filling or salad topper,
while the roasted vegetables can be folded into omelets, added to pasta, or
used to bulk up an otherwise boring green salad.
Once you get the cooking times down for various items,
you’ll find that mixing and matching ingredients to create different sheet pan
meals isn’t so hard. In fact, this method might just become one of your new
favorite ways of cooking dinner. For starters, try the curried roast chicken
dinner below, which pairs tender yogurt-marinated chicken drumsticks with a
trio of lightly glazed roasted vegetables.
Curried Roast Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner
If you don’t care for the taste of mango chutney, simply
season the vegetables with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lime juice instead.
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 yellow onion, roughly chopped
1-inch piece ginger, peeled, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic
1 Tbs. curry powder
1 Tbs. plus 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, plus additional, to taste
4 chicken drumsticks
4 oz. carrots, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 lb. small red potatoes, halved
12 oz. green beans, trimmed
2 Tbs. olive oil
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbs. mango chutney
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
1. Place the yogurt, onion, ginger, garlic, curry powder and
1 Tbs. of the salt in a blender. Blend on high until smooth. Place the
drumsticks in a large resealable plastic bag, add the yogurt marinade and seal.
Refrigerate at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.
2. Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet
with heavy-duty foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray or grease lightly
3. In a large bowl, combine the carrots, potatoes, green
beans, oil, remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and pepper; toss to coat. Arrange the
vegetables on one side of the prepared baking sheet. Set the bowl aside; do not
4. Remove the drumsticks from the marinade and place on the other
side of the baking sheet.
5. Bake until the potatoes and carrots are completely tender,
the green beans are slightly shriveled and a thermometer inserted into the
thickest part of the chicken, away from the bone, registers 170 degrees F, 30
to 40 minutes.
6. In the previously used bowl, whisk together the mango
chutney and lime juice. Add the vegetables and toss until evenly coated. Season
with additional salt, to taste.
You may enjoy these similar articles: